Earlier this year I wrote a piece about changes Netflix made to its website which forced its customers towards the online streaming part of its service and downplayed the DVD-by-mail option. It generated a lot of discussion because the move was alienating some of its customer base who prefer the mail option over streaming due to the lack of a decent selection of online movies.
Netflix wants to eventually stop the mail option altogether, and this week they made more changes to further this strategy. This time it has the potential to anger customers even more because it hits them in the wallet, not just how they navigate the Netflix site. The company is splitting its DVD and streaming plans in two – subscribers who want only DVDs can have a plan without streaming options and vice versa. Those that want both can still have it, but at an increased price.
Customers have been less than happy, to say the least. Netflix’s post announcing the change on Facebook has tens of thousands of comments, most of them angry ones. There’s even a Twitter hashtag, #DearNetflix, which has plenty of not-too-kind tweets in the company’s direction.
Like before, these changes wouldn’t be that big of a deal if customers could stream most of, if not all of Netflix content, but they can’t. I said it before, until Netflix solves this they should not be boosting prices for a half-baked service. Whether the company starts bleeding customers remains to be seen, but from a PR standpoint, it continues to make mistake after mistake this year.
What do you think about Netflix’s pricing changes?